Skeleton plant requires less water in winter

Glad Hands philodendron plant has wacky, weird skeleton hand leaves



Plants kept in a greenhouse environment don’t need less water in the winter.

SANDI KOBIESA, Multimedia editor

I’m a sucker for unique leaf shapes. Truly, one of the reasons I choose a plant is their leaves. Oftentimes, people go for variegated plants, and don’t get me wrong, I do too. But a wacky-looking leaf always calls my name.

This week, I thought I’d share with you one of my wackiest plants and one that was on my wishlist for a long time: the philodendron Glad Hands. 

Just like the name suggests, the leaves look like weird skeleton hands, and boy does it make me glad! 

The green color of the plant is, as some would call it, basic. But I love a basic green plant. That being said, without any variegation, the need for humidity is much lower. I still keep this plant in my greenhouse cabinet and it does get a lot of humidity, but it would survive without it. 

As always, Glad Hands is in a very chunky aroid mix that provides optimal drainage. I used to be very anal about my pots and would repot into a ceramic pot that matched the aesthetic I was going for. Over time, I have just been keeping them in their nursery pot. Some may call it lazy. Some may say that the nursery pot is the best. I say, if it has good soil and isn’t root bound, why would I repot a happy plant?

Like most of my philodendrons, I water him once a week. With the winter months coming up, I would cut back to watering once every week and half to two weeks. If you are able to maintain the perfect environment for your plants, such as utilizing growing lights, humidity, and higher heat, you don’t have to cut back on watering. 

So, with my plants being in a greenhouse cabinet, I do not cut back on my watering. That’s another reason why I keep my plants in well draining soil, we don’t want root rot in this house!

As for propagation, this bad boy is simple. Once he gets big enough, you will see nodes growing from newer stems. Propagate as you’d like, but again, I prefer air layering so that’s what I would do. 

With the shape of the leaves, I will warn you plant friends that bugs are sneakier here. With all the little creases, they can hide better, not be detected as fast, and wreak havoc on your plants. Use a watchful eye, and treat with neem oil to be preventative. 

Now, this bad boy may be higher in price, they average between $60 to $100. But compared to other collector plants, they are on the lower end of the price spectrum. I lucked out and got mine at a very reasonable price, but again, I work on the wholesale side of things. But I would without a doubt spend a good penny on this guy. 

If you chose to buy this plant, you’re making the right decision. Take it from me. This plant fills me with so much joy. I understand why it’s called the Glad Hands.